"President Clark is dead. He took his own life before we could arrest him. But he left a message on his desk. Two words: SCORCHED EARTH."
- – Senator Crosby's emergency transmission to John Sheridan
In December 2261, Senator Crosby led a group of guards to President Clark's office with the intention of removing him from power and placing him under arrest, after receiving a message from Captain John Sheridan stating that Clark's forces had been disabled. Realizing that he would soon be captured, Clark barred himself in his office and shot himself in the head with a PPG, shortly before Crosby's party could break down the door. On the late President's desk she discovered a note on his desk with the words "Scorched Earth" as the only clue to his intentions. Realising Clark had used his access to turn Earth's orbital defence platforms towards the planet, she reported this to Sheridan and implored him and his forces to destroy the weapons platforms before they could fire on Earth.